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The tides of American history lead through the streets of New York City — from the huddled masses on Ellis Island to the sleazy theaters of 1970s Times Square. The elevated railroad to the Underground Railroad. Hamilton to Hammerstein! Greg and Tom explore more than 400 years of action-packed stories, featuring both classic and forgotten figures who have shaped the world.
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Consider the following show an acknowledgment – of people. For the foundations of 400 years of New York City history were built upon the homeland of the Lenni-Lenape, the tribal stewards of a vast natural area stretching from eastern Pennsylvania to western Long Island. The Lenape were among the first in northeast North America to be displaced by w…
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The New York City subway system turns 120 years old later this year so we thought we'd honor the world's longest subway system with a supersized overview history -- from the first renegade ride in 1904 to the belated (but sorely welcomed) opening of one portion of the Second Avenue Subway in 2017. New Yorkers like Alfred Ely Beach had envisioned a …
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The story of a filthy and dangerous train ditch that became one of the swankiest addresses in the world -- Park Avenue. For over 100 years, a Park Avenue address meant wealth, glamour and the high life. The Fred Astaire version of the Irving Berlin classic "Puttin' on the Ritz" revised the lyrics to pay tribute to Park Avenue: "High hats and Arrow …
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Few areas of the United States have as endured as long as Flushing, Queens, a neighborhood with almost over 375 years of history and an evolving cultural landscape that includes Quakers, trees, Hollywood films, world fairs, and new Asian immigration. In this special on-location episode of the Bowery Boys, Greg and special guest Kieran Gannon explor…
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In today’s episode, Tom visits the Tenement Museum on the Lower East Side to walk through the reconstructed two-room apartment of an African-American couple, Joseph and Rachel Moore, who lived in 1870 on Laurens Street in today’s Soho neighborhood. Both Joseph and Rachel moved to New York when they were about 20 years old, in the late 1840s and 185…
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Edith Wharton’s Age of Innocence is a perfect novel to read in the spring — maybe its all the flowers — so I finally picked it up to re-read, in part due to this excellent episode from the Gilded Gentleman which we are presenting to you this week. The Age of Innocence is Edith Wharton’s most famous novel, an enduring classic of Old New York that ha…
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Baseball, as American as apple pie, really is “the New York game.” While its precursors come from many places – from Jamestown to Prague – the rules of American baseball and the modern ways of enjoying it were born from the urban experience and, in particular, the 19th-century New York region. The sport (in the form that we know it today) developed…
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The Chrysler Building remains one of America's most beautiful skyscrapers and a grand evocation of Jazz Age New York. But this architectural tribute to the automobile is also the greatest reminder of a furious construction surge that transformed the city in the 1920s. After World War I, New York became newly prosperous, one of the undisputed busine…
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The Brooklyn waterfront was once decorated with a yellow Domino Sugar sign, affixed to an aging refinery along a row of deteriorating industrial structures facing the East River. The Domino Sugar Refinery, completed in 1883 (replacing an older refinery after a devastating fire), was more than a factory. During the Gilded Age and into the 20th centu…
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So much has happened in and around Madison Square Park -- the leafy retreat at the intersections of Broadway, Fifth Avenue and 23rd Street -- that telling its entire story requires an extra-sized episode, in honor of our 425th episode. Madison Square Park was the epicenter of New York culture from the years following the Civil War to the early 20th…
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FX is debuting a new series created by Ryan Murphy — called Feud: Capote and the Swans -- regarding writer Truman Capote's relationship with several famed New York society women. And it's such a New York story that listeners have asked if we’re going to record a tie-in show to that series. Well, here it is! Capote -- who was born 100 years ago this…
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The Kosciuszko Bridge is one of New York City's most essential pieces of infrastructure, the hyphen in the Brooklyn-Queens Expressway that connects the two boroughs over Newtown Creek, the 3.5 mile creek which empties into the East River. The bridge is interestingly named for the Polish national hero Tadeusz Kościuszko who fought during the America…
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On the morning of November 14th, 1943, Leonard Bernstein, the talented 25-year-old assistant conductor of the New York Philharmonic, got a phone call saying he would at last be leading the respected orchestral group — in six hours, that afternoon, with no time to rehearse. The sudden thrust into the spotlight transformed Bernstein into a national c…
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Manhattan's Grace Church sits at a unique bend on Broadway and East 10th Street, making it seem that the historic house of worship is rising out of the street itself. But Grace is also at another important intersection -- where religion and high society greeted one another during the Gilded Age. Grace is one of the important Episcopal churches in A…
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This week we're highlighting an especially festive episode of the Gilded Gentleman Podcast, a show with double the holiday fun, tracing the history of Christmas and holiday celebrations over 19th-century New York City history. Licensed New York City tour guide and speaker Jeff Dobbins joins host Carl Raymond for a look at the city’s holiday traditi…
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For decades New Yorkers celebrated Evacuation Day every November 25, a holiday marking the 1783 departure of British forces from the city they had occupied for several years during the Revolutionary War. The events of that departure -- that evacuation -- inspired annual celebrations of patriotism, unity, and a bit of rowdiness. Evacuation Day was h…
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Greta Garbo in New York! A story of freedom, glamour, and melancholy, set at the intersection of classic Hollywood and mid-century New York City. The biography of a legendary star who became the city's most famous 'celebrity sighting' for many decades while out on her regular, meandering walks. Garbo had once been Hollywood's biggest star, a screen…
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